# How Do I Cast a Data Type in MATLAB?

//

Larry Thompson

In MATLAB, you can cast a data type to convert it from one type to another. Casting is a common operation when you want to perform certain calculations or operations that require specific data types. In this tutorial, we will explore how to cast a data type in MATLAB.

## Implicit Casting

Implicit casting occurs automatically when MATLAB converts one data type to another without any explicit instructions. This happens when the conversion is safe and does not result in a loss of information. For example:

```x = 5;      % x is an integer
y = 3.14;  % y is a double

result = x + y;   % Implicit casting of x to double

disp(result);    % Output: 8.1400
```

In the above example, MATLAB implicitly casts the integer value of `x` to a double value before performing the addition operation with `y`. The result is also stored as a double.

## Explicit Casting

Sometimes, it is necessary to explicitly cast a data type in MATLAB. This allows you to convert one data type into another, even if there may be potential loss of information. To explicitly cast a data type, you can use the function `cast()` or simply assign the value to the desired data type.

### Casting Using the `cast()` Function

The `cast()` function in MATLAB allows you to explicitly convert one data type into another while specifying the Target class. Here’s an example:

```x = int16(10);   % x is an int16

y = cast(x, 'double');   % Explicitly casting x to double

disp(y);    % Output: 10
```

In this example, we explicitly cast `x` from int16 to double using the `cast()` function. The value of `x` remains unchanged after the cast.

### Casting Using Assignment

Another way to explicitly cast a data type in MATLAB is by assigning the value to a variable of the desired data type. Here’s an example:

```x = int32(5);   % x is an int32

y = double(x);   % Explicitly casting x to double

disp(y);    % Output: 5
```

In this example, we use the `double()` function to explicitly cast `x` from int32 to double.

## Summary

• Implicit casting occurs automatically when MATLAB converts one data type to another without explicit instructions.
• Explicit casting allows you to convert one data type into another, even if there may be potential loss of information.
• The `cast()` function and assignment can be used for explicit casting in MATLAB.

By understanding how to cast data types in MATLAB, you can effectively work with different types of variables and perform calculations with precision and accuracy.